- Fruits and vegetables, in their whole forms, although frozen or canned (with low salt) are just fine.
- Proteins, including fish and vegetable sources such as beans.
- Dairy. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, older adults need more vitamin D and calcium to keep their bones strong. Low-fat dairy, green leafy vegetables and calcium fortified fruit juices can help, and if you take a supplement, make sure it contains both calcium and Vitamin D. The National Institutes of Health say that men ages 51-70 need about 1,000 mg a day of calcium and an intake of 600 IU (international units) of vitamin D up to age 70, then the amount goes up to 800 IU.
- Don’t forget the dietary fiber for digestive health, at least 30 grams a day.
- Potassium is another important mineral that may help lower blood pressure (as long as you are also reducing salt). Potassium comes from many foods such as bananas, sweet potatoes, and spinach.
- Healthy fats also play a role. Look for unsaturated fats such as extra-virgin olive oil, canola oil, and walnuts, avocados, and almonds.